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Law professor files lawsuit against UT Austin, claims she was paid $134K less than male professor

Linda Mullenix, a UT Law professor, claims in three years she was paid about $130,000 less than a male law professor who has less experience.

AUSTIN, Texas — A law professor at the University of Texas at Austin filed a racial discrimination and retaliation lawsuit against the school on Thursday, claiming UT pays her and other female law professors less than male professors in the same department.

Linda Mullenix, who filed the suit, claims UT Austin paid her $134,499 less than Robert Bone over the last three years.  

The lawsuit alleges Bone and Mullenix have the same above-average teacher evaluation rating, but Mullenix has more teaching experience, more publications and more professional hours.

“The pay gap is sex discrimination,” the lawsuit reads.

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Later in the lawsuit, Mullenix alleges she has received one of the lowest raises of any tenured faculty.

She also claims Dean Farnsworth told Mullenix he would match her pay with Professor Bone, but only if she would resign in two years.

READ: Law professor sues UT Austin

FOR THE WESTERN DISTRICT OF TEXAS AUSTIN DIVISION Plaintiff Linda Susan Mullenix files Plaintiff's Original Complaint & Jury Demand, and sues the University of Texas for violations of the Equal Pay Act, as well Over the past three years, Professor Linda Mullenix, one of UT Law's most distinguished professors, has been paid $134,449 less than male professor Robert Bone.

In the lawsuit, Mullenix also said the school has only assigned her to “do-nothing” committees, which have little impact on the school.

“UT Law has reason to be worried about others speaking out about unequal pay and sex discrimination,” the lawsuit reads. “For at least the last three years, UT Law has, on average, paid tenured female professors over $20,000 less than tenured male professors.”

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A spokesperson for UT Austin responded to request for comment on the lawsuit, claiming the school has a commitment to equal pay.

“The law school, like the university as a whole, strongly supports equitable pay based on merit and performance, and UT has taken efforts to ensure salary equity for faculty members across campus,” UT Austin Spokesperson J.B. Bird said. “Law school faculty pay is determined by a committee review of teaching, service, and scholarship with professional criteria applied to make these determinations. The university will have additional details relevant to the case when it files a response to the lawsuit.”

According to UT Austin’s Faculty Gender Equity Report from October 2018, pay disparities between female and male faculty members have gone down in recent years.

“In 2008, female faculty members’ salaries were, on average, 7.5% lower than males,” UT’s report reads. “In 2017, female faculty members’ salaries were, on average, 0.3% higher than those of their male colleagues.”

Mullenix’s lawyers said she was not available for an interview on Friday, but she held a press conference at the law school on Monday afternoon. At the conference, Mullenix said her attempts to deal with this problem have been pushed aside.

"I have been slandered as crazy, a liar, a complainer, whiny, difficult and a well-known problem – and more," Mullenix said Monday.

A UT spokesperson sent KVUE a statement saying the law school has taken steps to ensure equal pay for faculty members.

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